We are camped for a few days at Kershaw Ryan State Park in Caliente, NV. It’s a small place with towering walls up to 700 feet high behind us. Kershaw-Ryan State Park is an oasis in the desert, a sharp contrast to the rugged landscape that surrounds it. Natural springs grow a garden of wild grapevines, white oaks, fruit trees and willows. Samuel and Hannah Kershaw first moved to the nearby Meadow Valley Wash in 1873 and planted an orchard and garden where the park is now. It seems like a nice place to spend a few days riding.
Our first ride was in the park and we started right from camp. There isn’t a ton of info but the town is trying to boost tourism by building a bunch of trails. It’s high desert riding with our day starting at 4367′. Our route was 14.3 miles with 1492′ of climbing.
The trail from the park is pretty steep as we switchbacked up. I think it’s rated beginner on Trailforks but it’s not. I don’t know any beginner who would be able to climb this or descend it without walking. It was fine for us, but be warned. Most of the riding is through juniper and scrub and the trails are very flowy. The climb up the valley is gentle and we wrapped around to a viewpoint of the town far below. Continuing around on a slightly more rocky trail called Rainbow Rim that winds along the mesa and provides views of the park below. From this point we retraced our route and headed back.
I’d highly recommend checking out this state park if you’re passing through.